Booker, Paul delivers at end, Suns hold off Warriors 107-103

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Devin Booker’s two free throws with 34.2 seconds left gave Phoenix the lead, Draymond Green traveled to return it before Chris Paul made a short jump, and the top Phoenix Suns of the NBA held off the Golden State Warriors 107-103 on Wednesday night in a furious final between the Western Conference rivals.

Jordan Poole scored a season-high 38 points to tie his career high and also contributed nine rebounds and seven assists. He had five free throws in the final 1:20.

Poole drew a loose ball foul on Booker with 39.8 seconds left and converted two free throws before Booker passed for the Suns (62-14) in their ninth straight win.

Paul hit a key jumper with 1:37 left and finished with 15 points and eight assists, Mikal Bridges scored 22 points and Deandre Ayton added 16 points and 16 rebounds for Phoenix.

Green had a three-run game to tie the game with 2:25 left, the Suns committed a three-second violation at the other end but Golden State failed to capitalize that streak and Paul scored. Green and Jae Crowder had a few words near midfield after the final buzzer.

Booker scored 22 points but shot 5 for 21 – 2 of 8 from long range – while Torrey Craig missed all four of his 3-point tries.

The Warriors have played better defensively once again without defending champion Stephen Curry, who is nursing a foot injury that cost him seven games.

Poole shot 11 for 22 with seven 3s as Golden State headed home from a 123-95 loss at Memphis on Monday night.

“The hardest thing about Jordan is learning to play like Steph,” Suns coach Monty Williams said before the game.

Klay Thompson shot just 5 of 21 and missed nine of 10 3-point attempts in Golden State’s fourth straight loss, seventh in eight and third straight at Chase Center.

The Warriors had won the previous two matchups with the Suns, who have an eight-game road winning streak. Phoenix defeated the shot 7 for 28 on 3-pointers.

The teams split the season series into two games each.

Golden State coach Steve Kerr told his team in a morning meeting how well the Warriors had played defense in previous meetings with Phoenix and that they were able to do it again despite recent difficulties.

CURRY UPDATE

Curry has yet to return to on-court basketball activities while working out from a sprained left foot, but has been working out on a treadmill in the water and in the weight room. He could resume filming soon.

“Trend in the right direction,” Kerr said.

Golden State fell to 1-6 without him during that streak.

ADVICE

Suns: Phoenix won at the Warriors’ home court for the first time in four tries since a 121-110 win on Oct. 30, 2019. … The Suns won last season’s matchups 2-1 for their first game-winning season streak since winning all four meetings in 2010-11. Phoenix is ​​19-3 on the road against the Western Conference. … Cam Johnson missed his 13th straight game with a right quad contusion. … JaVale McGee sat out with non-COVID illness, missing his second in a row and this one against his former team.

Warriors: Gary Payton II left for the locker room with 8:43 remaining but returned at 4:54 to provide a key defensive presence on the stretch. … The Warriors went on a five-game-eight-day streak to now have three games in eight days in which they won’t have to leave the state.

FOLLOWING

Suns: At the Grizzlies on Friday night after winning back-to-back in Memphis.

Warriors: Host Jazz on Saturday night after winning the last three meetings with Utah at home before completing a home-and-away game in Sacramento on Sunday.

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More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports




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